Monday, December 28, 2020

Okay, Why Is The Money Flowing to Senegal?

Akon's on-again off-again smart city seems to be on again.

From the Robb Report, December 15:

R&B Star Akon’s New $6 Billion Smart City in Senegal Will Offer a Second Home for the African Diaspora
Residents will pay for everything with a new cryptocurrency "Akoin."

Akon may not be lonely for much longer. The famed R&B singer is going ahead with plans to build a new $6 billion smart city in Senegal where nationals can live and work—and where members of the African Diaspora will always be welcome.

The 47-year-old Senegalese American singer, known for hits like “Smack That” and “Lonely,” has confirmed that construction on “Akon City” will begin next year despite the pandemic’s devastating effects on global tourism. The 2,000-acre metropolis, which was first touted by the singer back in 2018, will feature a sprawling luxury resort, high-rise condos, recording studios, a stadium, and even its own cryptocurrency, “Akoin.”

The oasis is also expected to run on clean energy—no doubt supplied by the singer’s Akon Lighting Africa, which backs solar energy projects in rural areas—plus features an artificial intelligence data center. Naturally, the new city will have a futuristic aesthetic to match the cutting-edge tech. Penned by Bakri & Associates Development Consultants, the city is characterized by gleaming structures that have an almost Surrealist feel. In fact, the renderings look like the backdrop of a Ridley Scott film....


This isn't the first time Akon City has shown up on the radar. A look into the link-vault this morning yielded a 2018 post from SmartCitiesDive:

Rapper Akon floats smart city in Senegal reliant on own cryptocurrency  

And here's a project with somewhat more conventional financing. From Splash 24/7, December 24:

DP World to build $1bn port in Senegal

Dubai-based port operator DP World has entered into an agreement with the government of Senegal to develop a deep water port at Ndayane with a total investment of $1.1bn.

The port will be developed by DP World Dakar, a joint venture between DP World and the Dakar port authority. The plan is to invest $837m in the first phase, and another $290m in the second phase. Additionally, a special economic zone next to the port is also under planning.

Once completed, the port will be able to handle the largest containerships in the world.

The port project is part of the World Logistics Passport, a major initiative by Dubai to link nations around the world and increase South-South trade....MORE